We know what you’re thinking. Shakespeare is wordy and highbrow. But Curtain 440’s production of A Midsummer Night’s Dream, directed by Angela Miloro-Hansen, will change your mind. Written like a Renaissance soap opera, Midsummer is full of love plots gone wrong, fairies and royals, and a man turned into an ass.
Directing a cast of young adults means explaining a lot when it comes to Shakespeare. The group is composed of students and graduates from several area schools. Janna Klein, who plays Hermia says,” It’s a blast to work with this cast and with Angela. She has such patience with us and helps us to know exactly what we are saying. She expects the best from us.” Kaia Bulkoski (Titania) agrees. ‘I’ve been working with Angela since I was five. For the past thirteen years, I’ve wanted to do Shakespeare with her. Being cast in such a challenging role has been an amazing experience, I’m grateful to be able to learn so much from her.”
For most of the cast, this is a first experience with Shakespeare. They had the privilege to have a fellow director, Mark Cipra, come to a rehearsal and help with character development. They had a few more “ah-ha” moments, developing even more appreciation, and adding to their portrayals. Some of them, of course, were already deep in the literature. “I agree with Samuel Pepys (1662) in that this is ‘the most insipid ridiculous play’ and that there are some very ‘handsome women in it, ‘” said Bethany Truax (Oberon). She has made it her mission during rehearsal to supply the cast with a “fun fact” every day.
A more earnest and eager cast would be hard to find. They are bursting to share this classic Shakespeare comedy, or as Milena Fernsler, who plays Puck puts it, “The show is Puckalicious and delicious.”
A Midsummer Night’s Dream will run from June 14th -16th at Newbury High School Auditorium at 14775 Auburn Road in Newbury Township. Friday and Saturday will have showtimes of 7:30 p.m. and there will be a 2:00 p.m. matinee on Sunday. Tickets are $8 and $10 and will be available at the door or online at www.curtain440.com. Seating is general admission. A Midsummer Night’s Dream is presented by Curtain 440, in partnership with Newbury Schools.
Pictured In Cover Photo: Titania (Kaia Bulkoski) falls under a spell and in love with a donkey.
Photo Courtesy of Curtain 440